Laser sailing can be demanding and will require a certain amount of physical strength and endurance in order to successfully complete. That is why you’ll want to make sure that you are physically fit and healthy if you plan to compete in a laser sailing event. However, even if you don’t intend on racing professionally, you’ll still want to be fit and strong for your weekend getaways. So time to exchange those sailing shorts and pants for sweatpants and your sailing shoes for some trainers because you won’t be needing them during training. If you’re ready, here are some laser sailing fitness tips to help you get in shape for your laser sailing adventure.
Core exercises or those that work the abs and your lower back are essential to becoming a better laser sailor. Having a strong core will help to minimize or even eliminate potential injuries to your lower back. It will also help you twist and turn around the boat much easier which can ultimately help you sail your boat faster. There are plenty of core exercises that you can do like sit-ups for your abs and deadlifts for your lower back. You can enlist the help of a trainer or a coach to help you identify other core exercises which you can incorporate to your training routine.
Strength workouts are obviously an important part of a laser sailor’s training regimen. You’ll want to focus on building strength in your core, legs and arms since these muscles are what you will be using most when rigging a laser sailboat.
When talking about strength training, we’re primarily talking about lifting weights or resistance training. This means that you’ll have to work with dumbbells and barbells. Isolation exercises like those that use cable machines are also okay, but many strength coaches will generally recommend sticking to using free weights and doing compound exercises since these have bigger impacts to strength development than isolation exercises. As a tip, be sure to focus on proper form and execution when lifting weights. Otherwise, you are putting yourself at risk of injuries which can immediately disqualify you from competing at laser sailing events.
Laser races can be demanding to your cardiovascular system, hence the need to strengthen the said system and your overall stamina through training. One of the best ways to do this is by engaging in aerobic workouts and other similar activities that will get your heart pumping.
There are plenty of cardio or aerobic exercises that you can do. For instance, many laser sailors make running and cycling a part of their training regimen. If you’re not into those kind of exercises, you can do cross-training. As your heart and endurance improves, you’ll be more capable of seeing any laser race through to the end without feeling over-fatigue.
Additional Fitness Tips for Beginning Laser Sailors
Aside from regular exercise, a well-rounded laser sailing exercise program also requires you to pay attention to your eating habits and recovery periods.
Eating the right kinds of food is important not just for laser sailors and athletes but for everyone else. What you put into your body will certainly have an impact on how you’re body will respond to training and actual race days. If you’re not eating right, you won’t have the strength you’ll need to train and to race. Avoid eating junk foods or those high in empty calories since they won’t do your energy levels any good. When out in the water, fill your small cooler with water and energy drinks and bring sandwiches instead of the usual sodas and chips.
Having enough sleep and rest is also crucial to developing excellent fitness levels for laser sailing. As many bodybuilders know, muscles (and thus strength) grow not during training sessions but afterwards. During training you create micro-tears in your muscles and you need to give your body enough nutrients (hence the need for proper diet) and time to repair itself. As you develop more muscles you become stronger and more capable of maneuvering your sail and your boat in general.
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To be a successful laser sailing athlete or to be able to simply maneuver your laser more effectively, you’ll want to make sure that you are physically fit and healthy. As mentioned above, laser sailing fitness can be achieved by a combination of different laser sailing exercise programs that help you build a strong core, develop your strength, and improve your stamina and endurance. Not to be forgotten of course are proper nutrition and adequate rest. All these combined will certainly go a long way in helping you become a faster and better laser sailor in the long run.
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- Getting Fit to Sail Your Laser Sailboat, Laser Sailing Tips